Monthly Archives: October 2004

Osama's Sermon

The Kerry spinmeisters, like Maureen Dowd in today’s Times, are putting out the idea that Osama’s Friday afternoon sermon was meant to help Bush because, so the reasoning goes, Bush has been a great recruiting tool for the jihadists with his invasion of Iraq and all.

Bernard Lewis and Fouad Ajami, experts on the Muslim mind, don’t buy that. They note that Muslims are attracted to strength and repulsed by weakness. They also note that American policy toward the Muslim world has been for decades interpreted by Islamicists as expressions of fear and weakness.

During the past few decades, American policy has been one of accommodation toward Muslims, acts of compassion which to the jihaddists must not go unpunished. We forget that Reagan sent the Marines to Beirut to protect the PLO from Israelis and Christian militias. Unfortunately, Hezbollah didn’t respond with gratitude when they murdered the Marines in their barracks. Rather than retaliate by invading the terrorist strongholds in Lebanon and Syria, as George Shultz suggested, Reagan listened to the cautious Casper Weinberger and Colin Powell and refused to authorize an invasion.

Then we launched the humanitarian mission to bring food to starving Somalians. Again, murdered Marines, this time dragged through the streets of Mogadishu, followed once again by withdrawal.

Bush’s father invaded Iraq with UN permission and the support of all our allies (but not John Kerry’s) and we left Saddam Hussein in power. We thought we were being all multilateralist and respsonsible, but Muslims couldn’t believe we could have our hands around our enemy’s neck and then walk away to allow him to fight another day.

Bill Clinton intervened in the Balkans to save Muslims from genocidal Serbian Christians. Were the jihadists impressed? Not really, since Clinton ruled out the use of ground troops for fear that some Americans might get hurt. All our humanitarian war did was to reinforce the well-founded belief among the Arabs that American public opinion will not tolerate casualties.

Finally, Clinton pursued a disastrous policy of pressuring Israel to make concessions to the Arabs. In his pursuit of a Nobel Peace Prize from left wing Swedes, Clinton went so far as to send his political hit team of Carville, Begala, and Greenberg to run Ehud Barak’s campaign and thus helped elect the most peace oriented government in Israel’s history. Clinton and Barak proceeded to make concession after concession to the Arabs while ignoring Arafat’s many violations of the Oslo accords. Ultimately, Arafat rejected an unbelievably generous offer by Clinton at the end of his term, which was accepted by Barak, and then proceeded to launch a wave of suicide attacks against innocent Israelis.

What’s important here is that through all these compassionate and accommodationist American actions toward the Muslim world, the jihadists were preparing their assault on America that we now know as 9/11. Again, we thought that we were being helpful, positive, and concerned, all of which the jihadists interpreted as weakness and fear.

And what was Osama telling us on Friday? As I read it, he was offering us a deal: We’ll leave you alone if you leave us alone. This is the same deal Hitler offered Neville Chamberlain and Joe Stalin. And we all know how that turned out (although I wonder if there are many out there who know anything about history anymore). I suspect that he’d have rather sent us the kind of message he sent the Spanish last March, but since America is not Eurabia, he can’t pull it off.

The election of John Kerry would confirm in the Muslim mind that America will do what it has done over the last few decades when faced with casualties — run away. Now, which candidate gives voice to the desire of those American who would run away? A Kerry victory would confirm in the Arab mind that the jihadists are winning, which is their most powerful recruiting tool. To think otherwise is to be delusional.

Osama Endorses Kerry

So Osama rises out of his crypt a few days before the election to threaten American voters. Yes, I know he doesn’t explicitly endorse Kerry, but why else would he materialize on pre-election weekend? To get Americans to vote for the guy who kicked him out of Afghanistan and then helped bring about elections in a country that, until the American invasion, was permanently stuck in the Dark Ages?

The only explanation for Osama’s resurrection is he believes it will intimidate American voters in the same way the the Madrid train bombing intimidated the Spaniards. He thought the bombing of the Australian embassy in Jakarta would similarly frighten the Aussies, but they blew him off by reelecting the pro-American John Howard in a landslide.

So the question is which way will America go, the appeasing Spanish way or the Churchillian Australian way?

The answer lies in the extent to which the American electorate has been Oprahfied (or Dianafied as it applies to the British). Oprahism and Dianaism promote a more “sensitive,” more feminine culture. Any expressions of what used to be called the manly virtues such as physical courage, sacrifice, and military prowess are derided as infantile male fantasies, boys wanting to play with their “toys.”

The perfect expression of American Dianaism can be sampled in the work of Maureen Dowd who employs equal measures of pop-cultural allusions and psychobabble to deconstruct “Bushie, Rummy, and Wolfie.” John Kerry (or Nuancy Man, as Mark Steyn calls him), absent the camouflage and hunting rifle, is her kind of man.

Will the Arab Street be filled with joyful dancers on November 3rd (or whenever the last trial lawyer goes back to chasing ambulances)? Or will the Arab Street get the message that the pre-9/11 America of Vietnam, Mogadishu, and Beirut is dead?

It all depends on whether or not our educational system and media have succeeded in their decades-long campaign to Oprahfy our culture.

Why I'd Rather Read Curt Schilling than Norman Mailer

Here’s another cause of the death of literature.

U.S. Editor of Times of London Argues for Bush

Bush has faults, but not like Kerry’s.

Know him by his enemies:

The perils of war really do demand leadership and moral clarity. It is partly, to be honest, the quality of his opponent. The more you see of John Kerry the more troubling the thought of his presidency becomes. Behind a lifetime of careful, calculated decision-making it is clear that he harbors a deep suspicion about the very idea of moral clarity in foreign policy.

It is partly what Bush has done. Afghanistan is an infinitely better and less threatening place today than it was four years ago. Iraq, despite the catalogue of errors, is still heading that way.

But above all, in this oppositional sort of age, when it is often easier to be defined by what one is against rather than what one is for, I have to say it is his enemies who most justify Bush’s reelection.

The list of those whose world could be truly rocked on Tuesday is just too long and too rich to be ignored. If you think for a moment about those who would really be upset by a second Bush term, it becomes a lot easier to stomach.

The hordes of the bien-pensant Left in the universities and the media, the sort of liberals who tolerate everything except those who disagree with them. Secularist elites who disdain religiosity except when it comes from Muslim fanatics. Europhile Brits who drip contempt for everything their country has ever done and long for its disappearance into a Greater Europe. Absurd, isolationist conservatives in America and Britain
who think the struggles for freedom are always someone else’s fight. Hollywood sybarites and narcissists, self-appointed arbiters of a nation’s morals.

Soft-headed Europeans who think engagement and dialogue with mass murderers is the way to achieve lasting peace. French intellectuals for whom nothing has gone right in the world since 1789.

The United Nations, which, if it had its multilateral way, would still be faithfully minding a world in which half the population lived under or in fear of Soviet aggression. Most of Belgium.

Above all, of course, Middle Eastern militants. If your bitterest enemies are the sort of people who hack the heads off unarmed, innocent civilians, then I would say you are probably doing something right.

This may sound petty. It is not. This constellation of individuals, parties and institutions has very little in common other than the fact that it has contrived to be wrong on just about every important issue of my adult lifetime.

And so, perhaps for the wrong reasons, perhaps less because he has been right and more because those who hate him so much have been so wrong, I want this President re-elected.

Go on America. Make Their Day.

The Astonishing Success in Afghanistan

Why is it that the media have ignored the historic, astonishing achievement in Afghanistan?

Schilling to Fans: Vote Bush

Curt Schilling: Great pitcher, Great American.

Will the Lawyers Decide?

Will the lawyers decide?

Kerry and the Red Sox

Will Kerry try to use the Red Sox’s World Series win to his advantage? Bet on it.

But as my son Mike observed, the election, unlike the Series, will probably go to seven games.

Jews Commit Hari-Kerry

Are Jews committing Hari-Kerry?

Russia Tied to Missing Iraqi Explosives?

Did Russia remove missing explosives to Syria?